November 1, 2017 / 4:12 AM / a year ago

Malaysia's Ekovest shares drop after developer considers buying peer

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 1 (Reuters) - Malaysia’s Ekovest Bhd saw its share price fall as much as 22 percent on Wednesday, a day after the property developer said it would consider a proposal to buy a majority stake in Iskandar Waterfront City Bhd (IWC).

Ekovest, in a stock exchange filing on Tuesday, said its biggest shareholder, Lim Kang Hoo, had proposed Ekovest buy 62 percent of IWC for 1.50 ringgit per share - 7 percent above the stock’s last closing price.

Such an offer would value IWC at 1.26 billion ringgit ($297.73 million) based on the number of shares outstanding.

Lim owns 20.2 percent of Ekovest. He also controls IWC’s biggest shareholder, Iskandar Waterfront Holdings Sdn Bhd (IWH), which owns 37.7 percent of IWC.

IWC and IWH also on Tuesday called off a proposed merger that would have seen IWH publicly traded through the merged entity - a so-called back-door listing. A merger would have created one of Malaysia’s biggest listed property developers.

Trading in IWC and Ekovest shares was suspended on Tuesday. On Wednesday, IWC shares were down 5 percent in late morning trade compared with their Monday close. Ekovest was down 16 percent having recovered from a 10-month low.

($1 = 4.2320 ringgit)

Reporting by A. Ananthalakshmi; Editing by Christopher Cushing

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